11 DIY Kitchen Designing & Organizing Ideas Anyone Can Use

11 DIY Kitchen Designing & Organizing Ideas Anyone Can Use

DIY diva Jenna LaFevor has served up 11 amazing ideas for kitchen organizing – and y’all know how much I love easy, cheap and beautiful in one package.

Check it out – here’s my favorite tip this week – and of course, it’s related to my mistress, my dark lover – my coffee!

After the jump, you’ll find the link to Jenna’s full post, and I highly recommend that you click on through and read it – I got some really great tips myself.

I’m not a naturally organized person. So I do what I need to do to hack my life. 🙂

Here’s the coffee tip! Enjoy!

How to Create a Coffee Station

“Create a coffee station.My coffee station has only been around for the past few months, and let me tell you it has made my morning coffee ritual so much smoother.

You see, I tend to want my morning coffee faster than the Keurig can make it. I know that’s like the purest definition of impatience. I corralled my K-Cups, sugar and spoons all on a cheap little IKEA tray to get my coffee in my mug as soon as possible.

The only thing that isn’t there is the creamer in the fridge. Obviously, it’s not realistic to leave the creamer sitting out overnight uncovered, so I use that pitcher for my spoons. The little Cafe Du Monde sign is a nice reminder of my favorite city in the world.”

So, I don’t use K-cups (I’m a purist who insists on fresh ground coffee from a burr mill grinder brewed in a good old fashioned Bunn, but we’ve all got our thang, right?) Anyhoo, I think a coffee station is just about necessary for all of us.

Like the whole life hacking thing? Check out some of the other ways I hack my life, right here.

See the rest of Jenna LaFevor’s tips website: click here

The Multi-Tasking Myth: How to Really Get Stuff Done

The Multi-Tasking Myth: How to Really Get Stuff Done

“Most people are so busy knocking themselves out trying to do everything they think they should do, they never get around to what they want to do.”
–Kathleen Winsor

stressed-multitasking-womanIt’s no secret–today’s women are all about multi-tasking, which, as it turns out, is a big huge myth–in fact, the “multi-tasking myth” is a well-known thing these days. Some would call the idea of multi-tasking complete bullshit.

Whether we’re work-at-home moms, stay-at-home moms, corporate career girls or  retail clerks (or any number of acceptable roles we might choose), we’re all doing about 50 things at any given time, am I right?

But as we all know all too well–distractions get in the way of progress! Too often, even the slightest distractions end up being the difference between achieving your goals and missing the mark.

It’s important to remember that it doesn’t make you BAD–just unfocused. And hey, it’s natural for various emotions and events to cause your mind to stray. For example, I just moved out of the home I’ve lived in with my family for the past 11 years and into our dream home–and that’s been keeping me very busy for about a month now. But it’s important to avoid getting sidetracked for too long–for me and for you–because if you (and I) don’t, we’ll never get anything productive done. Well, not everything we need to get done, anyway.

Get Past the Multi-Tasking Myth: How to Really Get Stuff Done

Avoid Distractions to Achieve Your Goals

Take these steps to discipline your senses and give yourself the focus necessary to succeed:

 Listen to music. As strange as it sounds, music can boost your ability to avoid distractions. But how does noise help you concentrate?

  • Studies have shown that classical music enhances visual attention. Subjects apparently focus better with classical music playing than they do in silence.
  • Listening to music also helps you make the most out of your workout. The music you listen to at the gym is really useful. It helps you focus on working out by taking your attention away from the discomfort.

Focus on one thing at a time. This step is a work in progress because we live in a world where multitasking is the norm. It’s easy to get caught up with doing more than one thing.

  •  Your efforts to accomplish several things at the same time may be breaking your focus.
  • For the next few weeks, try to keep your tasks simple and one-dimensional. Aim to complete one thing before moving on to the other. Even if you feel underutilized in the process, try to stick to it.
  • By allowing your mind and senses to focus on only one thing, you’ll be able to give it your undivided attention. Then, you’ll be able to successfully complete the task.

Avoid distracting situations. When you’re surrounded by things or people whose appeal you would rather explore than focusing on what you’re currently doing, you’re setting yourself up for distractions.

  • A great example is studying in front of the television. In this situation, many of your senses are engaged in what you’re watching on TV, rather than on your studies. Find a quiet place to study, instead.
  • Let’s say you have a deadline for work. Develop the discipline to tell your friends that partying is out of the question tonight. Learn to say “no” to distractions.

Consider the repercussions. A little conscious thinking is all it takes to maintain focus. Have you ever stopped to consider the repercussions of allowing distractions to take over? Surely you would be less than thrilled if great opportunities passed you by!

  • Learning how to balance your priorities will benefit you. How useful is that particular distraction going to be to you a few hours, days, or months from now? Probably useless. Focusing on what’s important gives you lasting satisfaction.
  • Allowing distractions to consume your mind also leaves you open to other issues that can interfere with achieving your goals. It’s possible that your mind can become lazy, impatient, and sometimes angry.

Great things are in store for you once you allow yourself to focus on your goals. Remember that your ultimate satisfaction comes from reaching your goals. If you maintain focus, success is sure to come your way!

 

 

Mother’s Day Blues? Read this.

Mother’s Day Blues? Read this.

images-15When I woke up this morning, I was feeling a little bit sorry for myself. After all, it’s Mother’s Day, and while I am very blessed to have three beautiful children, this year, it felt a little bittersweet.

See, my oldest son (going on 17 in July) has made a poor choice in his young life; one that caused our family to have to change drastically. And thanks to choices others have made, our lives won’t ever be the same.

But as a family, we are working through it and we are confident that he will be just fine when he’s through with his treatment. He even wrote me a beautiful Mother’s Day poem that brought tears to my eyes (I shared that today on our Facebook page, if you’d like to read it–of course I’d highly recommend it!)

And my beloved mother-in-law passed away in December. Today, I’m really feeling her.

And maybe it was her influence that caused me to wake up and change my attitude.

But though I allowed myself a moment to wallow (and another  second when I saw someone post a Facebook status about unconditional love), I quickly got over it.

In fact, when I heard my husband and son making coffee as they prepared to surprise me with breakfast in bed, I almost felt guilty for feeling anything other than joy.

10151770694475411The fact is that I have three beautiful, healthy kids and a husband who loves me to the moon and back. And we are about to move into our dream home and begin the next amazing leg on this journey of life. How can I be anything less than grateful?

(The photo here was taken a few years ago after my daughter’s first dance recital.)

 

My point is this: no matter where you are today and how you’re feeling, try taking a moment to focus not on what’s bothering you or what makes you sad about your life, but on what makes you feel happy, thrilled, grateful, loved, fulfilled.

All those things that make you smile even when no one’s looking–those are the things that you need to stay focused on today. Because the truth is that you bring about what you think about–so focus on what you want and not what you don’t.

Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who has ever had the privilege to be called Mommy. And to everyone who is or was a Mom even when she didn’t have to be.

QueenBeeing Frugal: Menu 1 for a Family of 4

QueenBeeing Frugal: Menu 1 for a Family of 4

exps135855_TH2257746A07_07_3bA Queen Bee always eats like a queen…but what if she’s also on a budget? We understand. Many real-life queens have to keep a tight hold on their purse strings–but it doesn’t mean you can’t still eat like a queen.

It just means you have an opportunity to be more creative. That’s why we are publishing a weekly Queen on a Budget menu.

This week, we going to roast a turkey on Monday and use the leftovers on Tuesday. You might even have enough to change Wednesday’s dinner to Turkey tettrizini or to have sandwiches for lunch one day.

Monday

  • Roasted turkey
  • Dressing
  • Noodles or potatoes
  • Corn on th cob
  • Veggies or salad
  • Crescent rolls

Tuesday

  • Turkey day pot pie
  • Salad

Wednesday

  • Fish filets/sticks with tartar sauce
  • Grilled fish(save calories)
  • Garlic and cheddar perogies
  • Vegetable medley

Thursday

  • Taco bake
  • Taco dressings (sour cream, Pico de Gallo etc.)
  • Watermelon

Friday

  • Pork chops
  • Apple and sausage stuffing
  • Peas
  • Rolls and salad

Saturday

  • Pizza night (homemade or takeout)
  • Wings & salad

Sunday

  • Grilled or fried chicken
  • Mashed or baked potato
  • Steamed or buttered corn
  • Green beans
  • Rolls or bread
  • Salad

What are your favorite meals and recipes? Share them in the comments section below.

Why You Really Should Listen to Your Elders

Why You Really Should Listen to Your Elders

vs_elders_01After Nance Rosen’s comment on yesterday’s post regarding the facts about losing 100 pounds,  felt like it would be appropriate to continue the discussion. Today, we are focusing on our elders.

In part, Nance said, “There’s ALL kinds of ‘invisible’ people, or people who get overlooked, labeled lazy or treated as stupid. People with physical handicaps. The elderly. Youngsters (with opinions). People from cultures that are quieter than the typical American. Introverts. Ambiverts. People coping with illness, physical and mental. Parents who have to hold down two or more jobs and support several kids. People who work fast food. People who use food support debit cards. Kids who need school lunches. Anyone with an accent other than British.”

“The list is long,” she continued. “The point is: we are not in high school and no one is with the cool kids. Everyone goes home to their own concerns – and most people are alone with them. Even the happy, well-treated, slim, strong and beautiful people.”

Right on, sister.

Way too often, I see people around me minimizing the value of the older generation. People roll their eyes when an elder doesn’t understand some of our current technology or asks too many questions. Some consider their older family members more of a burden than an amazing resource.

The truth is, even those elders who haven’t experienced a formal education still have more life experience than your average Joe, and you can bet that they’ve learned some valuable life lessons along the way. Instead of feeling burdened by them, take a few minutes to actually listen the next time your grandma tells her stories. As her life has progressed, she has likely learned a few things that you haven’t yet.

Consider yourself lucky if one of your elders is willing to share this valuable information with you. The benefit of their knowledge and experience isn’t the only thing your elders can offer you. They can be one of the keys to understanding yourself better.

Knowing who came before you, whether biologically related or not, can be intense. I know that I have personally related to people of all ages, races and sexes in trying to come to a better understanding of myself.

After all, we are all connected. Your elders may also offer you a friendly ear when you need to talk, sage advice when you don’t know what to do, and much more. Who of us doesn’t wish we could reach into the past and have a conversation with someone who is no longer with us? Everyone has likely felt that way at some point.

Now, you can change things–take the time you’ve got to spend time with someone you love today.

Mini-Bliss Mission: Hang With Your Elders

Today, I challenge you to take a few minutes to talk with one of your elders. Call your grandma, chat with an elderly neighbor, or go visit one of your friends or family members in their homes. Whatever action you take, be sure to take a few minutes to listen to them. Remember, even if they don’t text like a pro or couldn’t send an email to save their lives–your elders have something important to say. Who knows, you might just learn something new!

What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments section, below.  

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